Thus says the LORD, the troubles are for one reason and one only. They are all due to the separation of God’s people by those that lead them (who they are listening to and following). In Amos 6 the LORD tells us to go and look upon those that have separated themselves, and He now tells us to understand the pattern. Verse 2 begins saying, “Pass you unto Calneh, and see.” The Hebrew words are, ‘abar Kalneh ra’ah. The translation – is to let your mind pass over the confusions and shame (kelimmah) and in doing allow yourself to see.
1 Woe to them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountain of Samaria, which are named chief of the nations, to whom the house of Israel came!
2 Pass you unto Calneh, and see; and from thence go you to Hamath the great: then go down to Gath of the Philistines: be they better than these kingdoms? or their border greater than your border?
3 You that put far away the evil day, and cause the seat of violence to come near;
4 That lie upon beds of ivory, and stretch themselves upon their couches, and eat the lambs out of the flock, and the calves out of the midst of the stall;
5 That chant to the sound of the viol, and invent to themselves instruments of music, like David;
6 That drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief ointments: but they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph.
7 Therefore now shall they go captive with the first that go captive, and the banquet of them that stretched themselves shall be removed.
8 The LORD God hath sworn by himself, says the LORD the God of hosts, I abhor the excellency of Jacob, and hate his palaces: therefore will I deliver up the city with all that is therein.
9 And it shall come to pass, if there remain ten men in one house, that they shall die.
10 And a man’s uncle shall take him up, and he that burns him, to bring out the bones out of the house, and shall say unto him that is by the sides of the house, Is there yet any with you? and he shall say, No. Then shall he say, Hold thy tongue: for we may not make mention of the name of the LORD.
11 For, behold, the LORD commanded, and he will smite the great house with breaches, and the little house with clefts.
12 Shall horses run upon the rock? will one plow there with oxen? for you have turned judgment into gall, and the fruit of righteousness into hemlock:
13 You which rejoice in a thing of naught, which say, Have we not taken to us horns by our own strength [sound like the ax that thinks it’s the power that swings it]?
14 But, behold, I will raise up against you a nation, O house of Israel, says the LORD the God of hosts; and they shall afflict you from the entering in of Hemath unto the river of the wilderness.
It is telling of the destruction that has come upon those who think they have it all and are in need of nothing. (They condemn and vilify God because of the tool He chooses, and in doing cause the separation from their brother – the separation of Philadelphia into Laodicea. See Hebrews 13 where it begins by telling to “Let Philadelphia (brotherly love) continue.” The chapter goes to tell us of the LORD’s saying, “I will never leave you, nor forsake you.”)
The full understanding of this context comes when later Amos 6:6 ends by saying, “but they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph.” The Hebrew text uses the same word ra’ah in describing in Genesis 46:29 Joseph’s father and brothers knowing him. Ra’ah is the word translated “presented himself.”
The name Kalneh is only used three times. The first mention is as one of the cities of Nimrod, who had defied the LORD (Genesis 10:9 & 10). The first of these cities is Babel, which means confusion, and symbolically represents a departure (defiance into self-inflicted disregard and separation) from the LORD. The following chapter in Genesis tells of the tower of Babel and the world going from one language into being scattered, and their achievement turned into stagnation.
Genesis 11:9 Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the LORD did there confound the language of all the earth: and from then and there did the LORD scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth.
The next time Kalneh is named is in Isaiah 10:9 as Calno. Here it is telling of the same context of our being called to see this as the example of those thinking they were in need of nothing, and thereby blinded to the heart (reason(ing)) of the matter. If you remember, Isaiah 10 is where we studied the idea of the ones thinking they were the power when merely the TOOL (ax) in the hand of the Power. This is also the chapter were we read of the remnant that will return from the separation. It is also where we read and have studied the determined end (the culmination) and the short work the LORD will make upon the earth. Restated in Romans 9:28 as, “For He will finish the work, and cut it short in righteousness: because a short work will the LORD make upon the earth.” We also saw it as where we are told of all the people being called together to pursue and finish those that have been afflicting God’s people (as in the Sword of the LORD, and of Gideon in the day they were called to the rock of Oreb.)
10 Woe unto them that decree unrighteous decrees, and that write grievousness which they have prescribed;
2 To turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the right from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless!
3 And what will you do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation which shall come from far? to whom will you flee for help? and where will you leave your glory?
4 Without me they shall bow down under the prisoners, and they shall fall under the slain. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.
5 O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, and the staff in their hand is mine indignation.
6 I will send him against a hypocritical nation, and against the people of my wrath will I give him a charge, to take the spoil, and to take the prey, and to tread them down like the mire of the streets.
7 Howbeit he means not so, neither doth his heart think so; but it is in his heart to destroy and cut off nations not a few.
8 For he says, Are not my princes altogether kings?
9 Is not Calno as Carchemish? is not Hamath as Arpad? is not Samaria as Damascus?
10 As my hand has found the kingdoms of the idols, and whose graven images did excel them of Jerusalem and of Samaria;
11 Shall I not, as I have done unto Samaria and her idols, so do to Jerusalem and her idols?
12 Wherefore it shall come to pass, that when the LORD hath performed his whole work upon mount Zion and on Jerusalem, I will punish the fruit of the stout heart of the king of Assyria, and the glory of his high looks.
13 For he says, By the strength of my hand I have done it, and by my wisdom; for I am prudent: and I have removed the bounds of the people, and have robbed their treasures, and I have put down the inhabitants like a valiant man:
14 And my hand hath found as a nest the riches of the people: and as one gathers eggs that are left, have I gathered all the earth; and there was none that moved the wing, or opened the mouth, or peeped.
15 Shall the axe boast itself against him that hews therewith? or shall the saw magnify itself against him that shakes it? as if the rod should shake itself against them that lift it up, or as if the staff should lift up itself, as if it were no wood.
16 Therefore shall the LORD, the LORD of hosts, send among his fat ones leanness; and under his glory he shall kindle a burning like the burning of a fire.
17 And the light of Israel shall be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame: and it shall burn and devour his thorns and his briers in one day;
18 And shall consume the glory of his forest, and of his fruitful field, both soul and body: and they shall be as when a standard-bearer faints.
19 And the rest of the trees of his forest shall be few, that a child may write them.
20 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the remnant of Israel, and such as are escaped of the house of Jacob, shall no more again stay upon him that smote them; but shall stay upon the LORD the Holy One of Israel, in truth.
21 The remnant shall return, even the remnant of Jacob, unto the mighty God.
22 For though thy people Israel be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant of them shall return: the consumption decreed shall overflow with righteousness.
23 For the LORD God of hosts shall make a consumption, even determined, in the midst of all the land.
24 Therefore thus says the LORD God of hosts, O my people that dwell in Zion, be not afraid of the Assyrian: he shall smite you with a rod, and shall lift up his staff against you, after the manner of Egypt.
25 For yet a very little while, and the indignation shall cease, and mine anger in their destruction.
26 And the LORD of hosts shall stir up a scourge for him according to the slaughter of Midian at the rock of Oreb: and as his rod was upon the sea, so shall he lift it up after the manner of Egypt.
27 And it shall come to pass in that day, that his burden shall be taken away from off thy shoulder, and his yoke from off thy neck, and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing.
28 He is come to Aiath, he is passed to Migron; at Michmash he hath laid up his carriages:
29 They are gone over the passage: they have taken up their lodging at Geba; Ramah is afraid; Gibeah of Saul is fled.
30 Lift up thy voice, O daughter of Gallim: cause it to be heard unto Laish, O poor Anathoth.
31 Madmenah is removed; the inhabitants of Gebim gather themselves to flee.
32 As yet shall he remain at Nob that day: he shall shake his hand against the mount of the daughter of Zion, the hill of Jerusalem.
33 Behold, the LORD, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn down, and the haughty shall be humbled.
34 And he shall cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and Lebanon shall fall by a mighty one.
1 And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things says he that has the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that you have a name that you live, and art dead.
2 Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God.
3 Remember therefore how you have received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore you shall not watch, I will come on you as a thief, and you shall not know what hour I will come upon you.
4 You hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy.
5 He that overcomes, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
6 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.
7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things says he that is holy, he that is true, he that has the key of David, he that opens, and no man shuts; and shuts, and no man opens;
8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before you an open door, and no man can shut it: for you have a little strength, and have kept my word, and have not denied my name.
9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are God’s chosen people, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you.
10 Because you have kept the word of my patience, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
11 Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which you have, that no man take thy crown.
12 Him that overcomes will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
13 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.
14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things says the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
15 I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot: I would you were cold or hot.
16 So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.
17 Because you say, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and know not that you are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
18 I counsel you to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that you may be rich; and white raiment, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint your eyes with eye-salve, that you may see.
19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
21 To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
22 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.